Spot Report by the Special Monitoring Mission to Ukraine (SMM): Explosions occur near SMM in western part of Luhansk region
This report is for the media and the general public.
On 12 April an SMM patrol consisting of five members and two armoured vehicles was travelling from government-controlled Katerynivka (64km west of Luhansk) to Popasna (69km west of Luhansk), 1.2km west of Zolote/Pervomaisk disengagement area. At 10:07, while driving, the SMM heard one undetermined explosion and saw black smoke in a forested area 200-250m south of its position. Less than a minute later, while the SMM continued driving west for about 100 metres to leave the area, the SMM heard another undetermined explosion at an unknown distance and direction. At 12:35 the patrol safely arrived at its base in Sievierodonetsk. No SMM members were hurt or vehicles damaged.
On the same day, another SMM patrol consisting of ten members and three armoured vehicles, intending to travel towards government-controlled areas, was positioned at the last “LPR” checkpoint before the contact line 1.5km south-west of Molodizhne (63km north-west of Luhansk) and about 1km south-east of the contact line. At 10:30, while at the checkpoint inside the vehicles, the SMM heard four bursts of heavy-machine-gun fire about 2km west and six to seven explosions, assessed as impacts of automatic grenade launcher fire approximately 0.5km south of its position. The SMM left the area immediately and reached “LPR”-controlled Pervomaisk (58km west of Luhansk). At 10:53, positioned in Pervomaisk, outside the vehicles, the SMM heard three to four undetermined explosions 0.5km west. The SMM immediately left the area and stopped farther south in Pervomaisk. No SMM members were hurt or vehicles damaged. At 11:55 the patrol travelled across the contact line without incidents, in co-ordination with the Joint Centre for Control and Co-ordination (JCCC). The SMM had co-ordinated beforehand the patrol route with the JCCC, receiving security guarantees.
The SMM informed the JCCC on the aforementioned incidents and asked it to take follow-up action.